View Full Version : Wireless Ethernet for Mac & PC - recommendations, pls.

Mar 23, 2003, 05:47 PM
I've stuffed my request in the title.
I'm getting ready to buy, and thought I'd ask the pros.

Mar 23, 2003, 06:42 PM
Originally posted by Armand
I've stuffed my request in the title.
I'm getting ready to buy, and thought I'd ask the pros.


That's pretty blanket of a request, but I'll do my best.

802.11b is 802.11b. You can use any base station you wish, 3com, Linksys, Airport, etc. And any [computer]compatible cards.

However, I would recommend the Airport Extreme due to the fact that you can suppport 802.11b (Slang: WiFi) and 802.11g (Slang: Wireless G), ergo being ready for the future, I'd go there.

Yes, the protocol for 802.11g has not been ratified by the IEEE, when they do, and any tweaks to the technology there may be, Apple's Airport Extreme has been written to be updatable via Firmware to maintain compliance. Barring a major change to the technology (doubtful at this point) this should be sufficient.

Mar 23, 2003, 10:12 PM
For a mixed (Mac and PC) environment, stick with 802.11b as it is fully compatible. 802.11g is not yet, even though being a "standard" it is supposed to be.

Linksys BEFW11S4 is very nice. Wireless router as well as wired (4 port) switch. You can set it up as a DHCP server, and never worry about anything else. Works great with OS X, Linux (Mandrake and RedHat), as well as Windows (98 and 2000) in my apartment.


Mar 23, 2003, 10:41 PM
One router I don't see too many of out there, but which I think is great after owning one for almost a year, is the SMC Barricade series. Good external antennas give me almost twice the range (in a non-scientific test, that is, walking around with my iBook) compared to my old Airport 1 Base, and the http interface is nicely done. They're cheap, too.

I had to return the Linksys I bought originally as it didn't work well at all with my iBook. I might have just had a bad unit, though, as I hear a lot of people using them with macs. It ended up being good, though, since I like the SMC better anyway.

If you're just sharing internet access over the wireless, and won't be transferring many files between machines, there's no reason to sink the extra money into G since regular B is more than fast enough for that. As the previous poster said, though, it's nice to be future-proof.

Stay away from 802.11A- it's a dead standard now that G is out.

Mr. Anderson
Mar 24, 2003, 07:48 PM
I'd go with the DLink wireless router, Linksys does not support Apple computers. I had one, it had problems, yet when I called their support, they said they couldn't help me.

DLink supports PC, Mac and Linux. Go for the wireless router, they're nice and cheap and you can get them at Best Buy.


Mar 24, 2003, 07:51 PM
I would say go with Airport Extreme. The standard today is still WiFi, but Wireless G will come along. And it would be cheaper in the long run to just go with the best now.

Now about linksys not working with Macs. Yes that is true, but there is this crack that makes it work and its VERY good. It just works as good as if you had a Airport Extreme Card. You should get linksys if ur on a tight budget and you have time to do the crack (takes about 45 mins for a novice).
But if you have one of those new macs that support Extreme, get the Extreme...I wished my supported it :(
Oh well..Linksys works just as well.

Mar 24, 2003, 08:18 PM
For the price, unless you already have a computer that uses 802.11g, go for the D-Link 802.11b wireless router on sale at best buy. Ive been using it flawlessly with my new powerbook and an iMac CRT as well as my powermac via the built-in 4 port router. The setup control (via http website) is easy to use and has very good help built in. D-link also updates their drivers very often, which shows that they support the newest protocols almost as soon as they come out.

Mar 24, 2003, 10:11 PM
Originally posted by Eckslusive
Now about linksys not working with Macs...


Y'know, this is interesting. I don't have any issues connecting with Linksys 802.11b.

Do you suppose it's possible because my 12PB has an extreme card?

Mar 25, 2003, 08:40 AM
I'm hoping that NetGear's new g access point will work with Airport Extreme cards. I really like their hardware.